This wrestler lost nearly an entire wrestler’s worth of weight
NOVEMBER 28, 2017 05:33 PM
When Johnny Hernandez left football after his freshman season for the Euless Trinity Trojans, the 240-pounder decided to pursue wrestling.
That was the start of a quest toward being a district champion — at a weight 95 pounds lighter.
Hernandez said he played football “because everyone else did it” and felt wrestling was something he could do for himself and see improvement along the way.
To be better, though, he took the advice of the Trinity coaching staff, head coach Travis Clark and former head coach Kelsey Lynes, and began his journey to weighing 145 pounds.
His sophomore year, Hernandez said he wrestled at 220, so the bulk of his weight drop occurred from his sophomore to junior year.
At 5-10, Hernandez said he hit 145 by the middle of last season when he won the district tournament. He is currently at 8-2 and picked up a third-place finish at the Arlington Invitational.
MY GRANDMA CAME OVER AND ASKED, ‘WHERE’S JOHNNY?’
Euless Trinity wrestler Johnny Hernandez, on losing 95 pounds
Weight is always a big part of wrestling but recent UIL weight certification guidelines provide specific rules on how much weight a wrestler can drop in a given season.
Adding to the problem, wrestling season is right in the middle of the holiday season, chock full of feasts such as Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s.
Over Thanksgiving, Hernandez said he kept an eye on what he ate but wasn’t going to do anything extreme. The break would include some sort of workout even if it was just going out for a walk.
Hernandez said his lifestyle change and wrestling workouts were what it took for him.
“I used to drink soda everyday, but the coaches taught me how to do it right, and then it became habit,” he said.
During the weight loss process, Hernandez said he’s actually been eating more frequently and drinking more water. He said he’s lost his desire for sodas altogether.
“I try to keep my workouts wrestling-related,” Hernandez said. “I do a lot of drilling and practice my moves,” adding that running has not played a big part of dropping the weight.
The 95-pound loss created some raised eyebrows at school, as might be expected, with some teachers questioning the student when they compared Hernandez to his school ID photo taken in his freshman year.
“I actually didn’t even notice the difference myself until I hit about 150. My grandma came over and asked, ‘Where’s Johnny?’
“I had asked the coaches how I can perform better and they gave me advice. This is the side effect.”
Clark said Hernandez is one of the hardest workers on the team and has improved by taking advantage of open mat sessions and working with different club teams.
“He’s come a long way and finally developed into his body,” Clark said. “He should be doing well this year.”
Getting to a competitive weight class is sometimes a necessary evil, though, in order to get to the district, regional and state tournaments for teams such as Trinity.
The Trojans have already been hard at it and with plenty of hardware to show for their efforts.
In just the first few weeks of the season, the Trinity boys’ team collected the Arlington Invitational tournament championship and six dual wins. The girls’ team placed third and has gone 5-1 in duals.
Other returning wrestlers include Harley Williamson, a state qualifier, along with Trey Reed, Caleb Freeman, Christian Collazo, Jeremiah Harper, Cameron Bye, Ayden Wilburn and John Valdez.